Last October Bishop Libasci was here to celebrate Confirmation and 1st Communion for our young people. While he was standing at the back of the church getting ready to celebrate the Mass with me, he took notice of our new doors at the front of the church. He loved how the light from the sun shone through the crosses carved out and moved the image of the cross around the front of the sanctuary. He thought it was beautifully reverent. Isn’t it true that church doors are meant to make a proclamation to all: “Welcome all who enter; experience the new life of Jesus as you pass through the doors of this church!” Isn’t it also true that we need “new doors” in other areas of our life through which we are welcomed to pass through all the time? For example, we need to welcome the doors of new challenges to our faith, like opening up to strangers who enter. Aren’t these signs that express our vitality and growth? Without embracing something new in our lives, we can stagnate even wilt and die slowly (“rust out”). I believe that Blessed Sacrament is a vibrant parish, always ready to embrace newness of life – which is a healthy sign of vitality and forward thinking!! Just think of all the new signs of life that are at our doorstep: new families attending; new people who are refugees from other countries & cultures. I probably have not mentioned all the new doors to add, but aren’t all of these new trends a sign that the Holy Spirit is moving us forward? Now is the time for us to respond. In the 2nd reading from Corinthians for this Sunday, we are challenged to move a step forward. St. Paul writes that we are “many parts, yet one body, and all are parts of Christ’s Body.” That means that we all have a gift to share for the building of the church. Paul names the variety of gifts, and we must welcome the gifts that are brought to each of us. We must us these gifts to build God’s Kingdom. The sign that we are moving in the right direction is brought to us in today’s Gospel. Jesus says that our mission is to “Bring glad tidings to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, to help the blind recover their sight, to help the oppressed go free.” In other words, when we are using our gifts to do these ministries for Christ, we are building up His Body, the Church. We are on the road to growth and new life! So next time you enter through the new front doors of our church, ask yourself: Am I using the gifts that God has given me? Who will I help this day by opening the doors of friendship and mercy to them?            ~ Fr. John 
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